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Re: Abbreviations

From: Asmus Freytag <asmusf@ix.netcom.com>
Date: Thu, 15 Nov 2001 17:32:33 -0800
Message-Id: <>
To: "Boza, Gladys (Gladys)" <boza@avaya.com>, <www-international@w3.org>
At 01:12 PM 11/15/01 -0700, Boza, Gladys (Gladys) wrote:

>I'm working on internationalizing our Java application. We are using 
>resource bundles to extract all the localizable text. couple of questions 
>came up:
>For now, we don't translate the name of our product due to marketing 
>issues. Since we are developing a wireless application we are forced to 
>use abbreviations of our product names due to the limited real state.
>For example:  AWC, for All Wireless Center
>* Does this abbreviation have a strong meaning attached in countries 
>like  Germany, France, Brazil, Lat America or Italy? like WC has it in 
>France (means toilet)

WC is used not only in France. But such meanings don't necessarily carry 
over into 3-letter acronyms.

On a personal note, I can't read any TLA nowadays without thinking of at 
least one out of context use. There just aren't enough of them to be unique.

>* If this abbreviations or product names are not translated, should I take 
>them out of the resource bundle and hard code them? Or should I leave them 
>in the resource bundle? The likelihood of translating these names in the 
>near future is very low, probably lower than the likelihood 
>of  translators translating them by mistake.

Leave them in. The likelihood that you'll discover that one of these, in 
one country or other, conflicts with some other three letter acronym in a 
way that you wish it wouldn't, is multiplied by the number of acronyms and 
the number of countries. If you hard code, you are stuck, if not, just 
patch the resource bundle. (You might make a separate bundle, so you don't 
even have to give it to the translators).

Received on Thursday, 15 November 2001 20:20:15 UTC

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